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Putting victims first in County Durham and Darlington


Competition inside! You could win a ÂŁ50 high street voucher

Road Safety Awareness Month 2017

Get involved and become a volunteer

Fair funding for Durham

PCVC Ron Hogg out in the community

PCVC Ron Hogg Hello and welcome to my latest magazine. At the start of 2017 I have emphasised my support for victims of crime across County Durham and Darlington. The new Mental Health Advocacy Service run by Advocacy Centre North has started to operate. Following HMIC's latest annual inspection Durham Constabulary has been assessed 'Outstanding' for the 3rd year in a row. Well done! This magazine also includes an update about the brand new Domestic Abuse Scrutiny Panel. My annual consultation on the Precept (the police element of the Council Tax) took place in January. Thanks to everyone who got involved and had their say. Throughout February, I led a campaign to improve road safety in our communities; I’m delighted that so many partners, residents and the Mini Police backed my campaign (see page 6 for details). I will also continue to meet with residents and communities across the area, to hear about what they want from Durham Constabulary.

Ron and his team have settled in now, after moving offices from County Hall to Police Headquarters. Here’s a reminder of our new contact details: Postal address: Office of the Durham Police, Crime and Victims’ Commissioner Durham Constabulary HQ Aykley Heads Durham DH1 5TT Tel: 0191 3752001 Email: general.enquiries@durham.pcc.pnn.gov.uk Web: www.durham-pcc.gov.uk


3 4 5 6

Show Racism the Red Card Would you spend a night in the cells for charity? Catch up with the office news Road Safety

8 9 10 12

Learn about the ways your police is funded

Awards for Community Peer Mentors and RJ Hub Interested in being a volunteer? Check out the new PCVC interactive map!

Ron Hogg Police, Crime and Victims' Commissioner County Durham and Darlington


Road Safety Show Racism the Volunteering Funding Formula Red Card p10 p6 p8 p3

Local pupils Show Racism the Red Card

Local primary school pupils have taken part in a series of anti-racism workshops with the help of former professional footballers. Workshops continue to take place across the area, and are funded by Ron Hogg, who visited two local schools in January to see the scheme in action. Ron visited Whinfield Primary School, where the workshops were delivered by former Newcastle United footballer Olivier Bernard, and Cat Hutchison of Show Racism the Red Card. He also attended Copeland Road Primary School in West Auckland where former Sunderland player Gary Bennett, and Cat Hutchinson led the workshops. These provide young people with a real understanding of the effects of racism on the individuals who experience it, and on the wider community in which they live. Ron said: “I have made reducing the impact of hate crime a key

objective in my Police, Crime and Victims’ Plan. It’s great to see how receptive these young people are to these workshops and I am sure that they will be in a better

Darlington can access the training at no cost. I hope more and more schools take advantage of this opportunity to help children to challenge racism and position to celebrate diversity and encourage diversity.” Anti-Racism Education Worker to discourage racial hatred as a Cat Hutchinson said: result. “I have funded this for about four “Unfortunately racism and Hate years now and I have had nothing Crime are on the rise and we are noticing that some people but positive feedback. Primary schools within County Durham or have an increasingly complex set of prejudices. Now more than ever we need to create a safe environment for young people and adults to talk about the things that confuse and anger them whilst allowing for their views to be challenged and alternative perspectives to be offered.” Photo of Gary Bennett leading the workshop, by Chris Booth

Supporting those affected by domestic abuse Scrap the Fee: In February, Ron Hogg joined fellow


You could win a £50 high street voucher in our competition. Hidden somewhere in the magazine is PawsUp Bob, the mascot for the retired police dog benevolent fund. Find Bob and click here to enter online, or call 0191 3752001. One winner will be chosen at random. Closing date is Friday 5th May 2017. Good luck!

Police and Crime Commissioners across the country, calling on Health Minister Jeremy Hunt to scrap the fee charged to domestic abuse victims seeking legal aid. Read more on Ron’s website. Domestic Abuse Scrutiny Panel: Ron has asked for volunteers to join this brand new Panel. This will be independent of the Police and will review a series of investigations by the Police, into cases of domestic abuse in County Durham and Darlington. See his website for details. Operation Encompass: This iniative supports children affected by domestic abuse. You can find more information on Ron's website.


Would you spend a night in the cells for

Four charities and an Independent Custody Visitor did just that and volunteered to be locked in a Consett Police Station cell, hoping to raise awareness of the issues surrounding mental health. The charities who took part were; YoungMinds, Consett YMCA, IfUCareShare, The Walking Wounded and the PCVC's Independent Custody Visitors. Durham Constabulary has taken the decision to ensure that no young person with a mental

Young PCVC


illness is taken to a police station as a Place of Safety. It is not an appropriate environment for people in a mental health crisis because it can worsen their experience and heighten their vulnerability. Katie, who stayed in the cell on behalf of YoungMinds, said:

“Whilst, to start with, I enjoyed the quiet contemplation that the cell gave me I quickly realised that it is a lonely place; made worse when there is hustle and talking which isn’t quite clear enough to make out, but reminds you that you are isolated from the world. This feeling must

Give a Gift '16

they work, and how the technology in the car gives them The ‘give a gift’ campaign was When I heard that Ron Hogg immediate information about launched across the force in a was looking for a young every vehicle that drives past. bid to gather as many parcels as person to shadow him, I I know that Ron spends time possible for people living in local knew instantly that it was working with the press and the care homes. something I wanted to do. media. I was interviewed for TV, More than 600 presents were The Police Cadets elected me radio, and the Northern Echo. donated by the staff of Durham to the role in September. After One of the projects funded is Constabulary. Those gifts were the election, Ron gave me a a scheme where Police Cadets delivered to seven care homes, two budget of £10,000 to allocate to will work directly with community hospitals and properties projects to improve the safety organisations that provide across County Durham and of our communities. I chaired public services, and influence Darlington. There were also a Panel of Police Cadets and how they can donations from local businesses Mini-Police, deciding which of develop. Dear Mr Hogg, seven proposals from young By Nathan Gaskill I am writing to say a big thank you for visiting St people should be funded. Margaret’s on Thursday 22nd December 2016. Our In November, I spent a day Residents are still talking about the visit, how much working with Ron and some fun it was, and the lovely gifts you brought them. Police Officers, learning The smiles on everyone’s faces absolutely made my day, I hope it warmed you in the same way. I would about what they do. like to take the opportunity to thank you, and wish I spent an afternoon in the you a very happy New Year. front of a Police car, with Yours Sincerely, the Police Interceptors. It Sandra Darroch was interesting seeing how Home Manager

charity? be terrifying for a young person who is going through a mental health crisis." You can watch their video diaries on the DurhamPCC YouTube and find more info about the charities on our website.

News update:

Mental Health Advocacy Service In the last magazine, Ron announced a new service for victims suffering from mental ill health. Since then, Helen Johnson has been appointed as Mental Health Advocate for victims with mental health issues. This post is funded by Ron to support his vision to help protect vulnerable people in our communities.

Helen’s role is to support victims of crime who may be struggling to understand and navigate the criminal justice process. She is employed by Partners for Justice, a Newcastle company, but works exclusively across County Durham and Darlington.

including chocolates from Thorntons and gifts from Sainsbury's. Ron along with the Chief and the Police Interceptors visited St. Margaret’s Care Home. In response Ron received a lovely letter of thanks. Chief Constable Mike Barton said: “The ‘give a gift’ campaign was developed to reach out to those individuals and deliver a little dusting of festive sparkle as the big day approaches. It also gives us the opportunity to remind them that we are there for them, should they need us.”

If you are a victim of crime and suffer from mental health issues, or if you know someone who is, and would benefit from this new advocacy service, please contact Advocacy Centre North: T: 0191 235 7013 F: 0191 230 5640 Email: advocacy@cvsnewcastle.org.uk Details can be found on the PCVC's website

Welcome Emma

A warm welcome to our latest member of staff in the office , Emma:

Did you know? A new interactive map has launched on Ron’s website. Find out more on page 12!

Hello! I am the new Engagement and Media Assistant here at the office of the PCVC. I graduated with a degree in Journalism last year with hopes of getting a career in media. I didn't have a clue where to start looking and almost gave in. However, I got the opportunity to volunteer with the Constabulary's amazing Media Team for several months which kept my hopes alive and led me to this new role. This job is an amazing first step on the ladder. I've been in the office since November and I have already gained so much valuable experience. No day is ever the same and everyday I learn something new.


February 2017 PCVC's Road Safety Awareness Month Pedestrians and drivers were encouraged to ‘Look Out For Each Other’, as part of a month-long road safety campaign to improve road safety. Led by PCVC Ron Hogg, the campaign aimed to: - Raise awareness of road related issues, - Improve education to help people stay safe on our roads, and - Signpost people across County Durham and Darlington to useful information provided by our partner organisations A big thank goes out to everyone who got involved, including the Mini Police, partner organisations, councillors, community groups, residents and schools. Thanks also goes to the media for helping to get these important messages out to residents, as Ron also featured recently on BBC Look North, Tyne Tees and local newspapers about some of the issues mentioned below.

Gilesgate Primary received Road Safety Lessons.

Christmas drink & drug driving campaign


173 drivers arrested across County Durham, Darlington and Cleveland during the month-long campaign. 116 arrests were alcohol related, and 57 connected to drug driving.

Mobile phone campaign

72 drivers on County durham and Darlington were apprehended during ‘Week of Action’ for using a mobile phone at the wheel.


Mini Police in

Harsher penalties for dangerous drivers Ron called for harsher penalties for causing death by dangerous driving. Also Ron welcomes the new penalties for drivers who use mobile phones.


ross Neville's C arn Primary le training. pedestrian

Wheatley Hill Mini Police

conducted a Speedwatch in Thornley.

Medomsley, reminding drivers to slow down.

Langley Park P rimary looked at anti-s ocial parking outsid e the school.

hris d PCSO C n a e c li o P Mini atch eld speedw O'Brien h e ton Aycliff near New Primary.

e from Mini Polic n s School o Greenland SO h with PC speedwatc rick. Nick Lave

Year 5s at Gilesgate taking part in a road safety quiz.

Bishop Ian Ramsey School

made their own speeding tickets.

Mini Police from Woodham Burn Primary School carried out spee dwatch on Central Avenue .

PCSO Bowman has worked with pupils from Cotsford Junior School, Horden.

Did you know?

ool unior Sch J e t a g d a Le osters to designed p es eeding issu highlight sp e village. around th

Heathfield Mini Police, Darlington monitoring the parking outside of the

A FREE voucher is available to every young driver in County Durham and Darlington for to receive additional safety training. Visit the EXCELERATE scheme website for details.




Fair Funding for Durham Constabulary

Ron Hogg and Chief Constable Mike Barton, met Home Office Minister Brandon Lewis MP to discuss the future funding for Durham Constabulary.

efficient, any significant reduction in funding is likely to have an impact on its effectiveness. Ron Hogg said: “It’s extremely important that the funding from Government is set according to a formula which enables Durham

Constabulary to operate effectively. I am writing to all local MPs to make them aware of the issues which I raised with the Minister, and to enable them to make the case for fair funding locally and in Parliament.”

The Home Office are currently reviewing the way that they distribute money to police forces. Given that Durham has already been rated as outstandingly PCVC Ron Hogg and Chief Constable Mike Barton at the Home Office

£560,000 raised from Council Tax (precept) for 2017-18

Funding available for community projects

In Ron’s annual consultation in January, 324 people gave their views, with 77% in favour of a small increase of 1.98% to the Council Tax from April 2017. This is the equivalent of 4p per week, or £2.20 per year, for households in Band A. This small increase will raise £560,000 for policing and maintain the equivalent of eleven Police Officers in post. Read more on Ron’s website.

PCVC Ron Hogg, in partnership with County Durham Community Foundation (CDCF), is making available £150,000 for a grants fund to support the community and voluntary sector. Funding is available for projects and initiatives across

What is Ron doing for victims?

Ron receives over £700,000 each year from the Ministry of Justice to fund services which help victims cope withand recover from the impact of crime. This year, Ron is funding the new Mental Health Advocacy Service and the Hate Crime Advocacy Service, as well as continuing to fund the Victim Care and Advice Service in its second year. He has also established restorative justice services to support victims of crime throughout their journey through the criminal justice system, and especially for those who feel that they might achieve a sense of closure from understanding better why they were made a victim by their offender.


County Durham & Darlington that help keep communities safe and contribute towards inspiring public confidence. The key themes that the fund is looking to support for 2017-18 include projects and activities that: -Encourage diversionary activities -Tackle anti-social behaviour -Tackle harm caused by alcohol, drugs, and violence. The closing date for applications is Sunday 30th April 2017. For details, and to apply, visit our website.

Surprise awards for the Restorative Hub and Community Peer Mentors The Restorative Hub and Community Peer Mentors were surprised to be presented with Community Pride Awards from Aaron Jack, 23, in a bid to give something back to the service that helped him change his life. Aaron turned his life around with the help of a Community Peer Mentor after long-running issues with a neighbour left him suicidal and vulnerable. He said: “My mentor saved my life and I don’t think volunteers working in the community get enough recognition – they are integral to so many organisations - I’d love people to nominate anyone they think should receive an award.” Jim Cunningham, who leads the Community Peer Mentor initiative, said: “I wasn’t expecting this, it was a lovely surprise, but the nicest thing is having watched Aaron grow and change. “This is down to his hard work and the great thing about this project is that we are there to encourage and empower people like him.” Also receiving awards were Sally Forth and Andrew Hancock from the town’s Restorative Hub which works to address community disputes and facilitate mediation between offenders and their victims. Andrew said: “I’m quite overwhelmed by it, I’ve known Aaron for a long time and am pleased to see him doing so well. “Seeing him start his own organisation is so inspiring, especially knowing it will make such a big contribution to the community.”

A victim's feedback about Restorative Justice... "Restorative Justice gave me and my family the opportunity to say so much more than what was stolen and whether we could describe our items or if we had a serial number to hand. It provided a space in the Criminal Justice process to really explain how the crime against us impacted on our lives. Fundamentally it provided answers that would be otherwise impractical to capture in any other way. My experience of the Restorative Justice process was that it was flexible to what I wanted to say and how I said it. On reflection I can say it provided resolution and alleviated fear. I sincerely wish to formally thank the Restorative Justice Team for their efforts and professionalism in how I was treated and the answers they provided to me." If you have been through Restorative Justice and want to tell your story or would just like more information please visit: www.restorativehub.org.uk or call: 0300 003 1818

Did you know?

Baroness Newlove, the Victims’ Commissioner, visited County Durham and Darlington on 6th March, and spoke to victims of crime supported by specialist services appointed by Ron. Find out more at: www.durham-pcc.gov.uk Aaron Jack presenting Jim Cunningham with his award


Interested in becoming a volunteer?

Richmond Fellowship

The Richmond Fellowship charity supports people with mental health problems by providing 24-hr supported accommodation services. It also runs group activities such as a walking group, and training events covering topics from communication skills to health & nutrition. The first volunteer, Diane, had used the service through her recovery, and felt she would like to give something back. Diane runs a lunch club and a cinema group; she also co-facilitates training events and jointly visits people referred to the service. As someone who has used the service, she can explain the support in a way people can relate to. Diane says volunteering has improved her confidence and she is proud of what she has achieved. For more information about volunteering contact Gail McGee on: gail.mcgee@richmondfellowship.org.uk or call 01388 748732 www.richmondfellowship.org.uk

Residents can do their bit to help combat litter on #OurStreets by taking part in this year’s Big Spring Clean. Last year more than 2,580 people took part in 187 community litter picks across County Durham and Darlington with 2,478 bags of rubbish collected. In Darlington alone, 839 people joined 45 litter picks, collecting 786 bags and 2.5 tons of bulky waste. It is hoped even more local people will register for the Big Spring Clean 2017, which runs from 28 February until 16 April and is organised by LitterFree Durham and Darlington Borough Council. To register to help clean up your local area contact: litterfreedurham@darlington.gov.uk or call 01325 406719 www.litterfreedurham.org

Good Friends


Big Spring Clean

Good Friends is a local support system for older people is helping more and more residents to improve their quality of life, and remain in their own homes for longer. The Good Friends initiative, which began in October 2013, has filled a gap in services which was identified by Age UK Darlington and the local police from Durham Constabulary. During this time Good Friends volunteers have provided residents with social support, reduced their feeling of isolation and promoting positive well-being. If you would like to become a Good Friend (or if you know someone who needs some extra help) contact: join@goodfriends.org.uk or call 01325 362832 www.goodfriends.org.uk


Interested in helping children and families? Got a few hours to spare? Nepacs is a north east charity which supports families and children affected by imprisonment. The impact of imprisonment can be devastating on families, which is why Nepacs staff and volunteers provide advice and support throughout this difficult time. Nepacs run prison visitors’ centres across the North East, provide support at court for families in Durham and Teesside, and offers a range of other services. Nepacs are looking for volunteers to work in the visitors’ centres, tea bars, youth zones, children’s play areas, or with the family support, youth project or support at court teams. If you would like more info from Nepacs contact: volunteering@nepacs.co.uk or call 0191 3757278 www.nepacs.co.uk

A day in the life of... a Nepacs volunteer Meet Catherine, who tells us why she chose to volunteer with Nepacs... I came across Nepacs when I chose to volunteer during the first year of my degree. I've always been interested in the ‘hidden sentence’ that families face when a loved one goes to prison. I’m now studying my Masters degree and the work that I do with Nepacs is light relief to compliment my studies. I was originally drawn towards Nepacs as I was curious to see how charities can improve the lives of those with a family member or friend inside. My average day revolves around checking in visitors. I have a lovely team that are incredibly welcoming to all visitors which makes them a pleasure to work with. My other roles include assisting with the tea bar, a lovely feature for our visitors who

have travelled a long distance and just want a cup of tea! Another role is to offer advice. Frankland recently opened an online pay-in system where visitors could send money to their loved ones. Some people who weren’t familiar with computers had trouble and people were also confused about what they can physically send or what sort of info they can put in their letters. We explain all this and put their mind at ease.

the day I volunteer, visitors asked where I was. It’s nice to know that I made an impact. Volunteering for Nepacs is an incredible opportunity. We have exceptional training, supportive staff and a whole host of opportunities. It’s not just prisons, we have community, court and youth projects. It’s amazing for your CV and boosts your confidence and communication skills. I would sincerely recommend this charity.

The work Nepacs do is amazing; some prisons don’t have a Visitor Catherine working in the tea bar Centre so being able to welcome them with a hot drink and a play area for kids reminds them that they’re welcome. Over time you get to know visitors and you are greeted like a friend. It’s nice to see them relaxed in a comfortable environment. When I changed

For more information on volunteering, visit www.durham-pcc.gov.uk


Don't beFollow anti-social! us and talk to us on social media. Just search for DurhamPCC on the following sites:

PCVC Interactive Map

Spring 2017: Dates for your diary‌

The latest feature on Ron’s website is his Interactive Map. Here you can find out about various activities Ron has carried out as PCVC, including: - Community and voluntary groups that have received a grant from Ron's Community Safety Fund

Ron will be holding his Community Days in towns and villages across County Durham and Darlington, on:

17th 22nd 24th 28th


March March




13th 28th April


4th May

9th May



10th 11th May


Full details will be updated frequently on the Events Calendar at: www.durham-pcc.gov.uk, and on Facebook and Twitter, so please look for any changes!

National diary dates...

Women's Day 08 March

Mental Health Awareness Week 08 May

Volunteers' Week 01 June

- Community engagement activity (e.g. schools, shopping centres, Community Day visits or stalls at public events) - Key business meetings (e.g. scrutiny meetings, such as the Police and Crime Panel). More and more activities will be added over time. Simply click on a marker within the map for more information.

Get in touch!

This is Ron's second magazine. If you have any feedback, whether good or bad, please contact the office by email, using the contact details on page two. This magazine is available in both online and in hard copy. If you would like a copy posted to you, or several copies for an organisation you may be involved in, please let us know.

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Hoggwatch Magazine Spring 2017  

View the Spring 2017 edition of the magazine HoggWatch, by Ron Hogg, Police, Crime and Victims' Commissioner for County Durham and Darlingto...

Hoggwatch Magazine Spring 2017  

View the Spring 2017 edition of the magazine HoggWatch, by Ron Hogg, Police, Crime and Victims' Commissioner for County Durham and Darlingto...